Saturday, May 14, 2011

Advice for Pets Eating Other Pet's Food

Question:  Hi, I am a Guinea Pig, my owner also has a rabbit and ran out of my food recently.  They have been giving me the rabbit food, which tastes okay, but I just do not seem to feel as good lately.  I am wondering if this is because of the food?

Signed GP the GP

Dear GP

You are quite right to guess this is food related.  Guinea pigs require food that has Vitamin C added.  If your owner is feeding you rabbit food they should give you another source of vitamin C to make up for the fact that rabbit food does not contain vitamin C. 

Vitamin C deficiency in Guinea Pigs will cause weight loss, fur loss, and sometimes a discharge from the nose.  You will not feel as healthy over all, and may have trouble breathing, or be sore all over (you may even yelp when your owner picks you up).

If you get this sick your owner needs to take you to a veterinarian for help. 

File:Small Guinea Pig.jpg
photo source - a healthy looking Guinea pig

Question:  I am a cat.  I live with a dog, and normally I do not mind the dog one bit, but lately he is eating my food.  I find this infuriating - he drools!  I often find my bowl empty as the dog has eaten all my food, and although there is some dog food in his bowl it really does not interest me.  How can I get the dog to stop eating my food?

Signed Kitty

Dear Kitty

I am sure the dog eating your cat food is annoying, but cat food is also bad for dogs so the dog should not be eating it.  Cats are true carnivores, your cat food contains more meaty ingredients which is why the dog is so attracted to your cat food.  Cat food has more protein and more fat than dog food, and could give the dog diarrhea. 

Additionally cat food is more expensive than dog food so if the dog is eating it they are costing your owner more money.

Cats should definately not eat dogs food.  Dog food does not have enough meat protein in it for cats, and more importantly it does not have taurine.  Taurine deficiency will show with problems such as poor vision, heart problems, poor growth (if you are a kitten), reproductive problems, poor skin and coat, and dental problems.

Your owner should find a place higher up to put your cat food so the dog cannot get at it. 

Read also, Should Cats and Dogs Eat Each Others Food?


  1. I get so worried for those pets worried about what they are eating. We actually have a skunk that comes around and eats our cat food. We have had to take measures to bring the cat food inside at night to hopefully drive the skunk away, but so far it is not working. Of course the food is only outside because a couple of feral cats and barn cats need it, otherwise we would not have it there at all. Even the blue Jays steal the cats food.
    Pets are our concern, as responsible owners it is up to us to buy them good food and supplies.

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